Every so often, I get the urge the cook something that I haven’t made for ages. So this afternoon when we went up to the market in Fethiye, rather than just buying the usuals, I had a quick scan round the stalls in search of a bit of inspiration. I had a rough idea of what I wanted to make but the ingredients needed to be right.
Fortunately, spinach is looking particularly fresh, young and abundant at the moment and it’s one of the ingredients I was on the hunt for. (I forgot to take a photo!) Spinach is used a lot in Turkish cuisine and is one of those ‘greens’ that we’ve both grown to really like since coming to Fethiye. I can’t say it ever made much of an appearance on our shopping lists in England.
Spinach (far too much of) in bag, we glanced around and finally spotted our trusty yufka stall. The market was really busy today so we couldn’t see it at first. A bag full of spinach and no yufka would not have made me a happy girl!
Yufka is phyllo pastry but ever so slightly thicker, making it much easier to work with. This lady produces fantastic, fresh sheets of yufka and we always go there to buy not only yufka but her home made bread sticks as well. She’s on the Fethiye and Çalış markets every week.
You can have all sorts of fun with yufka, creating different shapes and experimenting with a mixture of fillings (like we always do) but one of the traditional Turkish fillings is börek peynir.
So, off we went to the cheese and yoghurt stall to buy some börek peynir. Turkey has many cheese varieties and börek peynir (cheese for pastries) is a white, crumbly cheese. This stall had a few types and you can sample them all before buying. Some will have a creamier texture than others, whilst some are salty or slightly dry. We tend to go for the creamier, salty cheese – we’ve probably tried all of them over the years – and this type, well, it just suits the taste buds more.
Okay, shopping completed. Too tired to do anything with it when we got back from the market this afternoon so tomorrow is cooking day… (Click to this link to see the result of our shopping – spinach and cheese börek.)